EUROCONTROL launches solution to SSR code shortage

Brussels, Belgium – EUROCONTROL has launched the Centralised SSR Code Assignment and Management System (CCAMS) implementation project, a pan-European solution to overcome the current and future shortages of the secondary surveillance radar (SSR) codes used by Air Traffic Control for radar services. Caused by an overall increase in traffic levels as well as a rise in traffic to new destinations within Europe, SSR code shortages are becoming a limiting factor to future growth in European air traffic levels.

The current static system of codes based on national allocation is already running out of codes at peak times in some parts of Europe and this problem will increase as traffic increases.  CCAMS will eliminate code shortages by making more efficient use of codes than the current system does as well as by removing code conflicts that can affect flight safety.

CCAMS will consist of a central server located at the Central Flow Management Unit (CFMU). It will provide a unique code for each civilian flight operating within the region and will automatically distribute it to the ATC units concerned.

For implementation within the 2008-2011 timeframe, CCAMS will be deployed through a phased approach where ATC Units will join CCAMS in one of the three implementation phases. This is designed to bring early results whilst addressing the technical and operational issues which vary from state to state.

The first implementation phase covers the East European and Mediterranean states and is planned for the end of 2008. Operational Trials of the system will start early in the same year.  The second phase includes the Nordic states and is planned for 2009. The third and final phase is planned for 2011 and comprises the Western and South Western European states, the European core traffic area.

The Provisional Council of EUROCONTROL approved CCAMS at its 26th Session in November 2006. ICAO Paris has recognised CCAMS as the short to medium term solution to code shortages, as have Military Aviation, Industry and Airspace User Organisations at their respective high level working arrangements.

“CCAMS is another example of the aviation community entrusting EUROCONTROL with delivery of pan-European solutions to improve the European ATM network,” said Jo Sultana, EUROCONTROL’s Head of Airspace Planning and Network.


Source: Eurocontrol
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